The Montreal Impact just keep adding MLS veterans to their roster, with goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts becoming the latest. The Impact sent an undisclosed amount of allocation money to the Los Angeles Galaxy in exchange for the veteran, who has been among the league's best shot stoppers when healthy since joining the league in 2009. The trade was the second of the Impact's second of the day on Monday and their fourth since last week's Expansion Draft.
In Ricketts, the Impact have found a legitimate MLS starter to go along with Bill Gaudette, who has spent the last four seasons establishing himself as the best second-division goalkeeper in North America. Gaudette has not officially signed yet, but that seems to be a mere formality and Ricketts' acquisition may be designed at least in part to put some pressure on the 30-year-old to put pen to paper. Gaudette played for the Impact in the NASL last year after spending three seasons with the Puerto Rico Islanders. He also made 17 appearances for the Columbus Crew in 2007.
When healthy, Ricketts has been among the elite MLS goalkeepers. He registered 27 shutouts in his 70 MLS appearances and stopped about 76 percent of the shots he faced went 35-15-18. The biggest knock against him was his health, something he especially struggled with this year. Ricketts made a career low 15 appearances in 2011 and appeared to have been supplanted by Josh Saunders as the Galaxy's No. 1 goalkeeper. Saunders was stellar last year, registering eight shutouts in 18 starts.
Ricketts becomes the 19th player the Impact have acquired since joining MLS and is the fifth to arrive via trade. The Impact have definitely splashed around the allocation dollars, as they have included allocation money in all four of their trades. It's also another indication that the Impact are willing to spend on proven MLS veterans, as Ricketts is the fourth player they've acquired who made at least $180,000 in guaranteed compensation during the 2011 season.
For more insight and analysis of this move, be sure to check out LA Galaxy blog LAG Confidential.